Mono/The Ocean – Transcendental (Pelagic Records)

Genre: Post rock/progressive metal

This split release makes perfect sense; it’s a coming together of two of rock’s more visionary outfits, bands who make music to stir the soul, who produce majestic, atmospheric records that are akin to out of body experiences.

German collective The Ocean and Japanese troubadours Mono make perfect bedfellows here, each contributing one lengthy track to the album. In The Ocean’s case, it’s a heavyweight effort in the form of The Quiet Observer, which features a supreme vocal performance from Loïc Rossetti and bears the kind of complex, multi-layered arrangement that has become the Berliners’ trademark.

Mono meanwhile, take a simpler, instrumental route on Death In Reverse, building tension towards a glorious crescendo, then gently lulling the listener into calmer waters, as if a great storm has passed and the sun is warming the earth again. In other words, it’s absolutely brilliant.

Not heard of these bands? Transcendental is a good starting point. Long time fan? You need it in your collection, simple as that.

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8.5/10 Two’s company